Happy birthday to the late Pop Smoke, who would have been 21 today, July 20th. Fans can properly celebrate Bashar Jackson’s life with the release of his deluxe solid 19 song posthumous album, Shoot for the Stars, Aim for the Moon.
The album has the usual misogyny of a hip hop album. Mood Swings and Something Special are sweet raunchy ‘love’ song that for the ladies. But it’s songs like Creature where chants about how his “new bitch exotic” that made me want to roll my eyes. Nobody likes when rappers make mention the complexion of a woman a whole personality trait. It gives me anti-black women vibes, but I blame 50’s influence for that.
50 Cent executive produced the posthumous album and it makes sense because Pop’s sound was very influenced by 50. It makes the album almost feel like this was a ‘father and son’ project. It was like hearing two generations of the same sound. A lot of familiar 50 samples and references were used.
This project has so many features that it sounds like hip hop’s collective album, not something exclusively by Pop Smoke. Make It Rain has Brooklyn Drill founding father, Rowdy Rebel, spitting over the phone but, why were there no more drill artists on it?
Shoot for the Stars will have you wondering is it the hype or is this an instant classic’? From the start of the short intro, Pop’s voice booms on the track. The songs are melodic and he uses really familiar samples, like Ginuwine’ Differences on What You Know Bout Love. Towards the end of the album, the songs have extraordinarily strong R&B vibes but on Got It on Me brings back the classic rap vibes with the Many Men sample. The project as a whole is nightmarish in a good way.